The United States International Trade Commission on Tuesday determined that the U.S. tart cherry industry is not materially injured or threatened with material injury by reason of imports of dried tart cherries from Turkey, according to a news release. The decision came despite the fact that the U.S. Department of Commerce has determined Turkish tart cherries are subsidized and sold in the United States at less than fair value.
As a result of the ITC’s negative determinations, no antidumping and countervailing duty orders will be issued.
The decision was a blow to the beleaguered U.S. tart cherry industry and, in a news release also issued Tuesday, Michigan senators Gary Peters and Debbie Stabenow strongly criticized the ITC’s final decision not to impose tariffs on Turkish tart cherry exporters.
“By making this stunning reversal, the ITC is undermining its own mission, disregarding the overwhelming evidence and is letting trade abusers off the hook,” said Peters in the release. “Michigan’s cherry growers can outcompete anyone on a level playing field.”
As Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, Stabenow has repeatedly pressed federal trade officials to enforce the rules to hold Turkey accountable, according to the release.
“Michigan cherry growers have enough challenges without having to deal with foreign competitors who cheat and violate our trade laws,” said Stabenow. “I am outraged that the International Trade Commission has failed to hold Turkey accountable after investigations clearly showed egregious violations of the rules.”
Peters and Stabenow both said they will continue to fight to level the playing field for Michigan cherry growers.
The ITC’s public report — Dried Tart Cherries from Turkey [Inv. Nos. 701-TA-622 and 731-TA-1448 (Final), USITC Publication 5014, January 2020] — will contain the views of the commission and information developed during the investigations.
The report will be available by Feb. 18 on the USITC website at: http://pubapps.usitc.gov/applications/publogs/qry_publication_loglist.asp.
—by Jonelle Mejica